Sweet Valley High #28- Alone in the Crowd

The cover of the book shows Liz with her usual condescending look and arm pat- and the victim of this is none other than Lynne Henry, who is the sorriest sack of shit on the planet I am sorry! Although on the cover she sort of has a Lisa Loeb thing going on and I always found Lisa Loeb pretty cute- although Lisa has cooler glasses than Lynne, whose glasses are very thick in that 80 year old grandma way.

We start our novel with Jessica announcing a plan for a great fundraiser for the cheerleaders to collect money for new uniforms- a rocking chair marathon- yes people would pay to see how long the friggin cheerleaders would sit in a rocking chair. The fuck? Jessica also wants to ask the Droids, that kick ass Sweet Valley High rock band, and as Jessica runs off to ask them, she runs into a gal with an unfortunate outfit as described by Lila Fowler. That unfortunate outfit girl is Lynne Henry, and she is very quiet and Liz has noticed the ” tall, awkward girl” lately. Wait does Lynne become Shandi on America’s Next Top Model?

We then turn to Lynne, who is sitting by herself in the cafeteria bemoaning her very existence. Lynne thinks about how she has no friends and always fades into the background,  and her only salvation is her music- Lynne writes songs and plays guitar, and even teaches guitar at the local music store. Of course, this will become important later. Lynne pretty much spends the rest of the chapter thinking that she is a nobody and a loser. God, this is a downer. And I thought I was a loser in high school!

We next join Lynne as she rides the bus home from school. Lynne thinks about how she has crap clothes, ugly glasses, frizzy hair and a sharp chin and how it sucks, but Lynne doesn’t much care about looks. Ummm Lynne baby caring about looks is a REQUIREMENT of living in Sweet Valley! Lynne’s father died when Lynne was young, and Lynne’s mom is a glamourous spa owner. As Lynne walks home after being dropped off by the bus ( it’s a five minute walk which seems long considering it’s a school bus) she runs into Guy Chesney, the keyboard player for the Droids! Lynne saw Guy and the band play 2 weeks ago and was instantly intigued, and she wished she could get up on stage and perform like Guy does. Lynne and Guy talk about music and how they both love Linda Rondstadt, and as Lynne gets home she thinks she hopes she runs into Guy again! Lynne then thinks of how cute Guy is, and how talented, and as she strums on her guitar a song about Guy begins to form in her mind…

In the next chapter, Lynne’s mom is yelling for Lynne to get ready to school, and she doesn’t get why Lynne stays up so late. Well Lynne is a teen and a musician- not so unusual for her to stay up late! Lynne’s mom then suggests that Lynne may want to change her looks, ( see Mrs. Henry knows that if you have glasses and frizzy hair, you are NOBODY in Sweet Valley!) and Lynne gets upset. Mrs. Henry does also say Lynne puts a wall around herself, and she wishes she could get through to Lynne somehow- as she again poo-poos Lynne’s love of music. Good one, Mommy Henry- that will help Lynne open up! Why not ASK Lynne about her passion? Well, Lynne misses the bus and has to walk to school, where she runs into Guy again.  Guy and Lynne talk some, but then Jessica pulls up in her Fiat, and Lynne marvels at Jessica’s tanned skin, sparkling eyes and gorgeous blonde hair, and wishes she were as confident and pretty as Jessica. Jessica offers Guy a ride, and Guy hesitates saying he is enjoying his convo with Lynne, but Lynne tells Guy to go off and take the ride from Jessica. And Lynne talks down to herself some more- thinking how of course Jess didn’t offer her a ride because she’s excess baggage, and no one pays her the slightest bit of attention. And she also thinks how she is meant to be alone- permanently.  God, this poor girl needs CLINICAL HELP seriously! 😦

Jessica, Liz and Enid are headed to a junior class picnic and softball game at Secca Lake. The Droids are going to announce a songwriting contest according to Elizabeth. When the gang gets to the lake, Elizabeth sees Guy and Lynne talking animatedly- and Liz marvels at how Lynne is ” almost pretty” when she smiles- God you suck, Liz.  After Guy and Lynne chat about music and dreams ( I am not recapping THAT whole convo, sorry) Dana Larson annouces that the Droids are doing a songwriting contest and any Sweet Valley High student can enter. The entries must be on a cassette tape and given to the Oracle office. They will announce the winner a week from Friday. The winner’s song will be played at the next big Droids gig!! Lynne decides to enter the contest anonymously, and to write a song for all of the  ” nobodies” out there.

Lynne’s mom tries to talk to her again, and Mommy H says she gets lonely, too, and doesn’t want Lynne to shut her out. It’s sort of sad because Lynne’s mom cries a little- but Lynne continues to refuse to ” let Mom in” so to speak. Lynne’s song is called ” On the Outside” ( Looking In”) and Lynne does enter it in the contest anonomously.

Next, we learn that Helen Bradley, some cheerleader that is never mentioned before that I recall and isn’t mentioned again, is MOVING! This means Jessica and the squad have to hold cheerleader tryouts, and Jess thinks about how trying it was for HER to go through cheerleader tryouts last time because the squad wouldn’t accept ” Easy Annie Whitman” ( I NEED to read ” Wrong Kind of Girl” again!) and then Annie attempted suicide- and boy did that stink for JESSICA! God, you suck as hard as your sister, Jessica! Thank God Jess didn’t say that out loud!

So the Droids are trying to pick a winning song. Nothing stands out at all, until Guy finds the big yellow envelope that Lynne submitted her tape in. Guy says ” hey let’s play the song” and the lyrics start with ” day after day I’m feeling lonely” – very emo I’d say- and Guy and the band LOVE the song! Guy even chokes up, and he is on a mission to find this anonymous writer with the lovely voice! Next, Mr. Collins compliments Lynne on her awesome insights into Emily Dickinson’s poems ( oh Lordy when I was 14 and had a low self esteem I did love those poems) and Mr. C. says that one day Lynne realizes she is ” more than OK”- from Mr. Collins, that sounds kinda creepy!

So Guy offers to walk home with Lynne, and he offers to play her the tape of the song he likes best. Of course, Lynne thinks it’s someone else’s,  until Guy plays the tape and Lynne hears her own voice.  Guy says this girl sounds special, and he loves her voice. Guy says playing for this girl would be like playing for Linda Ronstadt, and Lynne thinks that Guy probably thinks the gal singing resembles Linda Rondstadt as well- ummmm in the 80’s wouldn’t a guy want a woman who resembled Madonna or Lita Ford, and maybe not Linda Ronstadt? Maybe I am wrong here? So of course since Lynne feels that Guy thinks the woman who is singing on that tape is a real Jess Wakefield like hottie,  Lynne does not say that it’s her song that Guy loves.

At the Beach Disco that night, Guy and Elizabeth get to chatting, and Guy says he thinks he has been looking for the girl who wrote that song for his whole life, and he wants Elizabeth to use her awesome reporter skills to find his dream woman! Elizabeth asks if Guy has ever thought that the girl entered anonomously because she didn’t want to be found, and she doesn’t really know how she’d find this gal anyway! And Guy says Liz is a ” good person” ( GAG ME) and if she could help he’d be forever grateful.

At home, Lynne decides her look could use some tweaking. So Lynne has gathered bunches of fashion magazines and tries on a hip outfit, plucks her eyebrows and puts on contacts- and she is instantly lookin’ a little more sexy! Lynne’s mom sees Lynne’s new look and is all thrilled, and Lynne says she wants to go to the spa sometime and get an even bigger makeover because she is tired of looking like a taller Mallory Pike like nerd! ( well of course Lynne didn’t mention Mal;) And Lynne’s mom gets all teary and is all happy that Lynne wants to get herself made over and pretty because in Sweet Valley pretty solves EVERYTHING! 

Liz is now going over to the music store to get a Billie Holiday album. Liz then hears a beautiful singing voice in the background of the store and recognizes it as the gal whose voice sings ” On the Outside Looking in.”  Elizabeth then SEES the girl, and it’s LYNNE! Lynne tells Elizabeth she is not to tell a soul that she is the girl who submitted the tape. Lynne says that Guy has a fantasy of this girl being hot and terrific, and she can’t ruin that fantasy for Guy because she just loves him so much. Elizabeth feels that Lynne isn’t giving herself a proper chance, and Guy should know, but Liz did promise not to tell. At the rocking chair marathon that night, the Droids play Lynne’s song and Liz can see how Guy is overcome with emotion while Dana sings the song- and Liz can see that Lynne is the girl that Guy is in love with- not sure how but whatevs.

So Lynne gets made over and has great brows, a nice blow out to control that frizzy hair, makeup and great clothes. So you KNOW her probs will soon be solved, as this is Sweet Valley. In the meantime, while still at the rocking chair marathon, Guy tells Liz he is in love with the girl who is singing that song, and it’s crazy but he can’t help it. Yeah Guy that is fuckin nuts- though I dunno- maybe if I just heard Chris Daughtry’s voice and never saw him I’d want him too- nah- fuck the voice I like Chris Daughtry’s bod and leather pants! 😉 Liz tells Guy she knows who the girl is but cannot say because the girl thinks that Guy wants a gal who resembles Linda Rondstadt and Guy gets WICKED EXCITED saying ” wow she mentioned Linda Ronstadt”? and runs off and Liz doesn’t get why. Of course WE know who besides Guy is all about Linda R!

So Guy tells Lynne he has figured out who the mystery girl is,  and he said that he got a friend of his dad’s to draw a description of the girl from what Guy thinks she looks like based on the tape, and he is going to pass it around at lunch. Lynne is all freaked out thinking that Guy is going to be showing a picture of someone who is not her- yeah Lynne doesn’t really get that Guy likes her. So of course at lunch, Lynne sees it is HER in the picture, and Lynne agrees to sing the song in front of everyone! And after Lynne does that, Guy tells Lynne he is in love with her- the girl on the tape!! And they kiss passionately and yes we learn that in Sweet Valley, you can always get  a man and a higher self esteem with a few eyebrow plucks and contact lenses!

So we end this novel with the annoucement that Amy Sutton is moving back to Sweet Valley!! See my review for #29, ” Bitter Rivals”, in this very blog!!!

Now as promised, I do hope to review Sweet Valley U’s ” Kiss of the Vampire” SOON! I also am planning to review a couple of Sleepover Friends books, more Sweet Valley High, and more Baby Sitters Club is coming up soon as well!



One Response to “Sweet Valley High #28- Alone in the Crowd”

  1. “Day after day I’m feeling kind of lonely
    Day after day it’s him and him only
    Something in his eyes
    Made my hopes start to rise

    But he’s part of a world that doesn’t include me…”

    Oh darn, I can’t remember the rest of Lynne’s song. Anyway great recap! I hate Liz so much.

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